a Taj MuttHall Dog Diary: We're Still Here

Friday, October 04, 2013

We're Still Here

SUMMARY: Boost training, Tika eating, Human Mom...wellll...

Hard to believe that I haven't posted anything since Sept 15. I keep thinking of things to write here to keep track of, but then somehow I never implement.

I've started working more diligently on Boost not wanting to drive ahead to obstacles in front of her. Working in the yard, mostly just running in circles to keep her going. Have rented the big field at Power Paws 3 times to spend an hour practicing. Got one private lesson--two days ago--so I've had only 2 days to practice a few minutes each day on that material. (Also got some tips on improving her weave reliability, you know, the reliability where some weekends she is HOT and other weekends we can't do them correctly EVah?)

I dropped my weekly class for a while so that I can concentrate on Boost's Special Needs. Feels odd--it has been a long time since I've not had a regular agility class or two, but I think that this is what we need right now.

She seems to enjoy it!

Tika started coughing more and more and I took her in to the vet Wednesday. He's pretty sure it's "bronchitis" caused by one or more of: weakening trachea (happens in some older dogs), heart enlarging more and pressing on the trachea, or allergies or dust. Lot of construction going on behind us right now to turn the 300ish-acre parcel into a park (yay!) and the neighbors are complaining about the dust, so could be that.

He recommended upping the hydrocodone that I'd been timidly giving her, and sure enough, pretty much no more coughing.

Although I'm not sure that she isn't a little less energetic. Hard to tell, because she's been less and less active and energetic. Maybe a couple of close-to-full-speed chases after a toy or frisbee, and then is content to just wander around investigating things. Lies down quickly in many cases. Doesn't bother getting up to see what's going on unless she's really convinced that it's worth her while (used to always have a Tika tailing me everywhere, every time I even stood up).

Her appetite seems good as long as I keep rotating through 4 different kibbles (NOT the one she's been eating for 10 years and NOT the one that I bought for her back in August--got tired of both). Although she's SO SLOW now. Old timing on mealtime: Both dogs sit. I set Tika's food down and release her, she attacks it. I set Boost's food down and release her, she starts eating calmly, and...Tika is done already! NEW timing on mealtime: Both dogs sit. I set Tika's food down and release her, she starts picking up small mouthfuls and chewing thoroughly. I set Boost's food down and release her, she starts eating calmly. Eventually, Boost finishes and then stands and watches Tika. Meanwhile, I take 6 t-shirts out of the dryer and fold them neatly. Then, finally, Tika is done. It's eerie, how different it all is.

I seem to be making some kind of subtle commitment to continue doing agility, as I have just bought a replacement tunnel for the most disintegrating one, and I've just bought 2 new (well...used) jumps. No activity on adding dogs to the family, though. I'm starting to be inclined to wait until Tika is gone (yikes, painful to think of).

My foot no longer bothers me--mostly because my back has been giving my muscles and nerves such a nasty ride that I've not been very active. But in the last couple of weeks I've started walking to the frisbee park again, and working on a little agility training again, and trying a couple of new things through the physical therapy department. There might be hope. (I think I'll still be struggling this weekend, but mentally I'm feeling pretty good.)

So, this weekend--off to Turlock for two days of USDAA agility. Boost competes, Tika gets to hang out.

I usually, as we all know, get up at 4 am to drive out on Saturday morning of out-of-town trials, but after getting up to the alarm this morning to go up to the practice field, I decided that I can't bear to do that again (even earlier) tomorrow, so I've done the unusual thing and reserved a hotel room for tonight. MUTT MVR is pretty much packed--oh, clothing! Ok, will get to that in a moment--and dogs got some exercise and maybe, just maybe, I'll be in bed in Turlock at a reasonable hour tonight! Worth the expense this time around, anyway.

See you all on the other side of Weekend.


  1. Great to hear that it's working, the whole rotating-through-different-kinds-of-kibble thing. Excellent!

    Hope the weather cooperates and you all have a good time this weekend.

    1. Weather was beautiful Saturday, a bit warm this afternoon. No rain, though, and no scorching heat. It was good!

  2. Glad you splurged on the hotel. Hope you all slept good and you're having a fun weekend!

    1. We all slept very well indeed. Hope I can sleep as well in my own bed tonight!